HRW: Israeli failure to distinguish combatants and civilians is a war crime 1


From Human Rights Watch

(Beirut, July 30, 2006) ‘ Responsibility for the Israeli airstrikes that killed at least 54 civilians sheltering in a home in the Lebanese village of Qana rests squarely with the Israeli military, Human Rights Watch said today. It is the latest product of an indiscriminate bombing campaign that the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) have waged in Lebanon over the past 18 days, leaving an estimated 750 people dead, the vast majority of them civilians.

‘Today’s strike on Qana, killing at least 54 civilians, more than half of them children, suggests that the Israeli military is treating southern Lebanon as a free-fire zone,’ said Kenneth Roth, Executive Director of Human Rights Watch. ‘The Israeli military seems to consider anyone left in the area a combatant who is fair game for attack.’

This latest, appalling loss of civilian life underscores the need for the U.N. Secretary-General to establish an International Commission of Inquiry to investigate serious violations of international humanitarian law in the context of the current conflict, Roth said. Such consistent failure to distinguish combatants and civilians is a war crime.


One thought on “HRW: Israeli failure to distinguish combatants and civilians is a war crime

  • Guy Erwood

    Nobody should be surprised at the actions of Israel. Read Deuteronomy 20 (The Laws concerning War), especially verse 16: 'But of the cities of these people, which the LORD thy God doth give thee for an inheritance, thou shalt save alive nothing that breatheth.'

    Nasty, or what? And the idea that Jews have an inheritance from 'God' is, of course, absurd.

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